Does your analysis indicate that the gold bull market has run its course or do you see substantial advances still to come?
We've seen a lot of the froth come out of gold and silver. If you look at who was buying gold from 2000-2007, it was long-term investors worried about the long-term economic and political basis, in which they live. From 2007 and until 2011, you had a lot of trend followers, momentum traders, shorter-term investors, and people who were afraid of hyper inflation or collapse of the financial system, come into the market. We had the worst year in 2011 economically and politically, with Athens burning, the ECB fiddling, with the U.S. government diddling with the debt ceiling and having the treasuries downgraded for the first time ever. By late September fourth quarter 2011, a lot of people said, "Wait a second, we've just gone through the ringer and the world didn't collapse." So you started seeing people, the shorter-term people, sell gold. In 2012, they kind of traded the range. In 2013, they just sold. They just gave up the ghost.
Other people took that as an opportunity to buy. We had about 29.7 million ounces of physical gold purchased worldwide last year, in 2013. That is a historically enormous number. It was down from about 40 million ounces in each 2011 and 2012, but it was still an extremely high volume of gold. Investors have not fled gold. Interestingly, it's investors worldwide. A lot of people think that the buying is only coming from China, but if we look at our data we are seeing very high levels of investment demand for gold in: China, to some extent in India-- the government is kind of restricting that, the Middle East, Europe, Japan, and North America. We're really seeing a global gold bull market, in terms of investors who are taking the opportunity of prices that are $600-$700 lower than they were 2 years ago to stock up.
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